A young lady who credits the Boys & Girls Club for transforming her from a shy five-year-old into a confident teen leader has been named Central Wyoming’s Youth of the Year for 2018-19.
A junior at Kelly Walsh High School, Kayla Messmer won a $5,000.00 Ruth R. Ellbogen Education Award, along with the chance to compete at the state level in February. The announcement was made at the 20th Annual Awards & Recognition Breakfast held on August 29, 2018.
Kayla has grown up in the Boys & Girls Club starting at the age of five at the Evansville Branch and eventually moving over to the Main Club where she continues to attend today. She said the Club has given her adults that she can count on and the skills to become a strong leader.
“Over the past 11 years, the Club helped me grow as a person and a leader,” said Kayla. “I have learned what it means to be a Club member, which is being respectful, caring for others, and learning from those around me. The Club has given me skills that I will be able to apply in life now and into my future.”
Kayla would like to attend college to study to become a pediatric nurse.
Brentan Brown, junior at Kelly Walsh, and Quintin Vasquez, a senior at Natrona County High School, each received a $250 Ruth R. Ellbogen Education Award as finalists.
Established in 1947, Youth of the Year is BGCA’s premier recognition program for Club members, promoting service to Club, community and family; academic success; strong moral character; life goals; and poise and public speaking ability. The program is used as a year-round tool for fostering young people’s character, personal growth and leadership qualities.
Contestants are judged in several categories presented in written essays, an oral speech, and live interviews.